First major sale of milk powder from intervention
It is understood that almost 30,000t of Skimmed Milk Powder was sold from the EU’s massive stockpile of the product at this latest auction.
According to sources in Brussels, first unofficial results are showing that 29,678.98 tonnes of SMP in intervention sold at a price of €1051/t.
It comes as global dairy prices jumped at a fortnightly auction held early on Wednesday, snapping four consecutive falls and pointing to ramped up global demand that could see further price rises.
The European Commission bought up around 20pc of SMP production in 2015 and 2016, at a time when raw milk prices slumped by around 50pc.
There is now around 377,000 tonnes in storage, the majority from French, Belgian and German producers.
Ireland comes in sixth place with over 37,000 tonnes in stock.
Agriculture commissioner Phil Hogan intends to put "significant volumes" back on the market while butter and raw milk prices are good. "We are determined but not desperate," Mr Hogan told dairy processors last week, calling on them to make "meaningful bids in line with market reality".
But producers are sounding the alarm, pressing for the stocks to be used for animal feed or donated to the poor so they don't compete with freshly produced powder.